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Catching Up With Justin Gainey



Justin Gainey spent 10 years of his life at NC State as a player, working in administration and on the coaching staff.  After spending one season as an Assistant Coach at Elon, he recently made the move to Appalachian State University, where he will be an Assistant Coach for Head Coach Jason Capel.  Gainey was a four-year starter at NC State and ranks 9th in school history in assists (344) and 4th in steals (190).  Recently we had the chance to catch up with Gainey, and allow him to tell us how the transition to Appalachian State has been.

On how he was contacted for the ASU job…

“Coach Capel called me once he got the job at Appalachian State. He wanted me to come join him. I already had an established relationship with Coach Capel because we played high school basketball together for a season back at Greensboro Day. I was a sophomore and he was an 8th grader. He was so good that they allowed him to move up to varsity. We developed a quick bond because we both started at the school at the same time. Since then, we’ve continued a friendship throughout the years. We were able to continue that friendship even through the NC State/UNC rivalry. We’ve always had a good relationship through the years, and because of that, the transition up here has been a lot easier.”

On how his responsibilities have expanded at ASU…

“Coach Capel has made it clear that he is going to lean on everyone on his staff. I’m going to have more responsibilities in the development of the point guards. He’s kind of given me more freedom in that area.  One of the biggest reasons for making this move, was because it was a chance for me to get more involved in everything.”

On why he took the job…

“The biggest reason I took this job was because the program has great tradition and history. The facilities were a big upgrade, as well as the support and the backing of the program. I just felt like it was a good move for me and my family. It’s definitely a great situation.”

On how his family is adjusting to the change…

“My family is not coming up here until August 1st. One of my children was still in school in June and we are mostly on the road in July. They are excited and I think it is going to be a good change for them. The community here has really embraced us.”

On what to expect from ASU this upcoming season…

“Last season they won the Northern Division for the third straight season. They made it to the championship game and lost to Wofford, even though they beat Wofford at their place earlier in the season. We are returning 3 starters from last year’s team. Donald Sims, the league’s leading scorer is returning, and he was the AP Player of the Year. We are bringing in a really good recruiting class. We also had two transfer players on the team last season that had to sit out, who came in from the Big South and were All-Conference players. I really think we have a great opportunity to do something special next season. These guys are really focused and they have their eyes set on winning the whole thing and going to the NCAA tournament.”

On what it is like to work with someone you already have a relationship with…

“It’s really special for us to be able to work together, already having the relationship that we have. We both know that we have the same goal in mind, and that is to be successful and to win as many games as we can. It’s great to be working with Coach. He’s young and energetic. He’s very involved in every aspect of the program.”

On how he and Capel played together back at Greensboro Day…

“The one season that we played together at Greensboro Day, we played pretty well. We won the Little Four Tournament, which is a big tournament in Greensboro. We beat Dudley in the championship, which was a huge game. We both earned all-tournament honors in that one. Then we made it to the state championship game and lost, but he was unable to play. They came up with some rule at the end of the season saying everyone on the team had to be in high school. In the end, we had a lot of success playing together that season. I think we only lost 3 or 4 games all season long.”

The last thing that Gainey asked in our conversation, was that we continue to follow him.  He wants the Wolfpack Nation to follow and support the Appalachian State Mountaineers.  We promised him that we would do our part, by providing updated coverage on ASU throughout the basketball season.  Support one of your own Wolfpack fans, and pull for ASU this upcoming season!

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Pack in the Pros

NC State NFL Preseason Week 2 Report: Saturday & Sunday



A handful of former NC State football players were in action on Saturday and Sunday in the 2nd week of the 2019 NFL Preseason. If you missed the report from Thursday and Friday’s games, check it out here.

Wide Receiver Jakobi Meyers is becoming a legend in New England this preseason. He had 6 receptions for 82 yards (6 targets) in the Patriots 22-17 victory over the Titans on Saturday.

Meyers has had 6 receptions in both preseason games thus far.

Meyers went undrafted this Summer, and he’s looking like a WR1.

Quarterback Jacoby Brissett was fantastic on Saturday night, completing 8 of 10 for 100 yards and a touchdown (QB Rating: 141.7).

Andrew Luck is still battling an ankle injury, and it’s looking more and more like Brissett could be the Week 1 starter for Indy. The Colts plan on making the decision after the third preseason game.

Running Back Jaylen Samuels had 4 rushes for 26 yards (6.5 yards per carry) and a touchdown in the Steelers 17-7 victory over the Chiefs on Saturday night.

Running Back Nyheim Hines had 1 rush for 9 yards in the Colts 21-18 loss to the Browns on Saturday. He also had 1 tackle, and 1 punt return for 0 yards.

Defensive Tackle Justin Jones had 1 tackle and 1 QB Hit in the Chargers 19-17 loss to the Saints yesterday.

Quarterback Russell Wilson was 6 of 9 for 82 yards in the Seahawks 25-19 loss to the Vikings yesterday. He also had 2 rushes for 9 yards.

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Pack in the Pros

NC State NFL Preseason Week 2 Report: Thursday & Friday



Week 2 of the 2019 NFL Preseason kicked off on Thursday night, and quite a few former NC State players shined over the past two nights.

Quarterback Ryan Finley was exceptional on Thursday night, completing 20 of his 26 pass attempts for 150 yards and 2 touchdowns (0 interceptions) in the Bengals 23-13 victory over the Redskins. His QB Rating on the night was an impressive 115.9.

At this point, it looks like Finley has established himself as Andy Dalton’s backup.

Linebacker Germaine Pratt had 3 tackles, 1 Pass Deflection, and 1 QB Hit in Cincinnati’s 23-13 victory over Washington.

Wide Receiver Kelvin Harmon was targeted twice in the Redskins 23-13 loss to the Bengals, and insanely called for offensive pass interference on both plays.

And YES, this insane catch by Harmon was challenged by the Bengals, and flipped to offensive pass interference.

Harmon reminded the Twitterverse that there are no 50/50 balls thrown his direction. They are 90/10 balls.

Harmon’s coach Jay Gruden doesn’t want him to change a thing.

Quarterback Jalan McClendon was 2-2 for 12 yards in Washington’s 23-13 loss to Cincinnati.

It was cool to see 4 former Wolfpack players chatting it up on Thursday.

Quarterback Mike Glennon was dang near perfect on Thursday night, completing 11 of 14 for 175 yards and 2 touchdowns (0 interceptions) in the Raiders 33-26 victory over the Cardinals.

Glennon is solidifying himself as Derek Carr’s backup.

Punter AJ Cole had a boot on Thursday, averaging 49.4 yards per punt (5 punts) in Oakland’s 33-26 win over Arizona. Cole dropped 3 of his 5 punts inside the 20.

Place Kicker Stephen Hauschka made 1 of his 2 field goal attempts in the Bills 27-14 victory over the Panthers on Friday night, and was 3-3 on extra points. He made a 30-yard field goal, and missed a 48-yarder.

Defensive End B.J. Hill had 2 tackles in the Giants 32-13 victory over the Bears last night.

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AJ Cole is the Last Punter Standing in Oakland



Former NC State punter AJ Cole went to Rookie Minicamp with hardly any expectations of being signed. Honestly, the percentage of players there that get a contract are miniscule.

But in the end, Cole was one of the few from that were invited to Training Camp, still with no guarantee of a roster spot.

But uncertainty became certainty for Cole yesterday, when the Raiders waived Johnny Townsend, their punter from 2018, leaving the former Wolfpacker as the final punter still in the Oakland Raiders camp.

“To sign some players, you have to let some players go,” (Jon) Gruden (head coach) said Tuesday. “Hate to see Johnny [Townsend] go. We still think he’s a really good punter. A.J. Cole deserves to be our guy at this point.”

“Well, he has a tremendous leg,” (Rich) Bisaccia (Special Teams Coordinator) said. “He has a natural hang to him, kind of even on his bad ball he can kind of get away with it. He’s a high-hit guy on his contact on the ball and he’s really improved his holding as he’s come along. And he can kickoff, so it gives us a little bit of an advantage that way with having the ability to have two guys that can kickoff through preseason.” (Raiders)

Cole’s 220 punts rank 3rd in NC State history, his 9,288 punting yards ranks 2nd, and his 42.2 yard average ranks 3rd.


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Trea Turner Extends On-Base Streak to 20 Games



Former NC State All-American Shortstop Trea Turner extended his on-base streak to 20 games last night, going 2-4, with a home run accompanied by 4 RBI’s.

Turner is in a league of his own over the past 4 years.

For a little of perspective of where Turner’s on-base streak stands in MLB history, check out the all-time list below.

Longest on-base streaks in Phillies history

Player Year(s) Games BA during
1. Mike Schmidt 1981-82 56 .330
2. Chuck Klein 1930 49 .409
3. Bobby Abreau 2000-01 48 .330
4. Odubel Herrera 2017-18 45 .355
5. Chuck Klein 1931 44 .412
6. Pete Rose 1982 41 .317
Don Hurst 1929 41 .342
8. Willie Montanez 1974 40 .377
9. Jimmy Rollins 2005-06 38 .379
Scott Rolen 1998-99 38 .286

On the year, Turner is hitting .290 with 11 home runs and 25 stolen bases.

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